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Only certain types of clouds can bring thunderstorms. One type of storm cloud is called a cumulonimbus cloud. These clouds are also sometimes called thunderheads. These clouds often look like mushrooms. They form closer to the ground than many other clouds. These clouds need warm, humid air to form.

Thunderstorms can form over land and sea. Storms over water are different than storms on land. Thunderstorms over water usually have more rain. And lightning is 10 times more likely in thunderstorms on land. But when sea storms do have lightning, these storms are usually stronger than storms on land.

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Making Connections


Are thunderstorms common where you live? Why or why not?


Have you read books about other kinds of storms? How are they similar to thunderstorms? How are they different?


Lightning can be a dangerous part of a thunderstorm. Why is it safer to stay away from tall objects, such as trees?

Teacher Resources

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